Staff Profiles

Jose Manuel Padial

Research Associate

+1 (212) 769-5734
+1 (212) 769-5031
  • Research Interests

    Research Interests

      Scientific Interests:

      My research focuses on inventorying and understanding species diversity. I work on amphibians and reptiles of the tropical Andes and the Amazon, which count among the most diverse, endangered and poorly known areas of the world, but also in NW Africa. In order to discover species and to infer diversification mechanisms, I study local and broad scale patterns of genetic and phenotypic (morphological, bioacoustic) diversity using methods of taxonomy, phylogenetic systematics, and population genetics. I'm also interested in the philosophy of systematics, especially the epistemology of species concepts, the ways classifications can reflect evolutionary history, and the implications of our simplifying assumptions when ontological individuals are treated as sets or natural kinds.

      Currently, my major areas of research are the evolutionary history of New World direct-developing frogs (Terrarana), and the origin of Amazonian diversity.

      My research on Terrarana (a cluster of families comprehending ca. 900 species) includes reconstructing the phylogeny of the group, studying morphological evolution, testing biogeographical hypotheses on Neotropical diversification, and identifying correlates of clade diversity and diversification rates.

      Together with Dr. Santiago Castroviejo-FisherDr. Ignacio de la Riva, and Dr. Andrew Crawford, I am coordinating the largest collaborative project on the diversity and origin of Amazonian amphibians performed to date. We have brought together a group of 24 researchers from 15 countries with the goal of producing the first broad-scale screening of Amazonian amphibian diversity and to study historical processes responsible for species and genetic diversity in the Amazonian lowland forests.

  • Publications